Around these ore storage bins or areas there are three possible places of work, on top, under, and in. Each one has their own brands of danger, and methods of safety and protection.
The dangers of working under these areas are MOVING EQUIPMENT, PRYING ON HANGUPS, STANDING’ON EQUIPMENT and SMALL PLATFORMS WITH LITTLE HEAD ROOM. That old saying an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure is very appropriate for this area. Your personal safety is greatly increased when all walkways and work areas are clear of tripping hazards. Guard rails are in place and emergency stop trip cords are in good repair. Have a proper storage area for tools. Remember if you leave pry-bars lying around, they become a tripping hazard and an unnecessary risk. The other safety habits that I would like to mention deal with working inside of the bins and on the stock piles.
If there is work to do inside the fine ore bins, the bulk of the work will be preparing the bins so that it is possible to work safely in them. This job doesn’t come up too often, but when it does it can be a real problem. Prom the top of the bin to the bottom is a long way down. Even a small rock can injure a person should it fall from the top. Therefore it is necessary to be sure that any rock that may fall is brought down under controlled conditions. There may be no more than a shovel full to bring down or there may be tons of material. Whatever the case it means that someone has to remove it. To do this type of work safely there are some guide lines to follow.
First SAFETY LINES. Your equipment must fit, and be in good condition.
There must be a worker employed as a LOOKOUT and LINE
TENDER. It will be his responsibility to ensure that the people working below are safe, and are aware of any danger that might threaten them. To tend safety lines properly, there should be one person per line, and the lines must be free of each other. Here are some of the things that may happen if these few rules are not followed.
If you are wearing as SAFETY BELT instead of a HARNESS, The fit is imperative, Should it be too loose, and if the worker did slip he may flip upside down and fall out of the
belt, If the line tender doesn’t keep tension on the safety lines and the worker falls, the worker may break his back or some ribs when he hits the bottom of the slack.
The greater the slack the farther the fall the greater the possibility of injury. If the safety lines are all tangled together and a worker should fall than anyone else that his lines are tangled with may fall as well.
It is very easy for a worker intent on the job at hand not to be aware of impending danger. The lookout tending the safety line is in position to observe everything that is going on below. He or she will be able to warn their fellow worker should something be developing that the worker may not be aware of.
As for the workers in the bin there are a few things that they should be aware of as well. First never work directly under a HANG UP, the loose material could slide at any time, if it does there may not be enough time to react.
Never disconnect your safety line while you are in the bin.
Always ensure that your point of exit or entry is secure, if it is a ladder be sure that it is securely fastened or tied down. If it is a hatch or door ensure that there is nothing hanging over it that may come down either trapping you in the bin or landing on you while you are coming or going.
Never hold a SCALING BAR directly in front of your body, if the ore should slide suddenly the force of the ore could push the bar back into your body causing a severe injury.